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Old 07-05-05, 09:25 PM   #1
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Polar S725 Is it worth the price

My old computer is about to rattle apart and this computer caught my eye. Seems to have everything one could possibly want but at $250 (best price I've found) its might expensive. Power measurement and altitude measurement intrigue me the most. Anyone have any experience using these functions? Are they easy to find? How's the setup functions? Does it take a rocket scientist to read the instructions?
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Old 07-05-05, 10:55 PM   #2
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For $250 you don't get the power measurement attachment. It's about $350 by itself. The basic unit comes with the wrist monitor, chest strap, bike mount, and speed sensor. The cadence sensor is about $30 extra. The basic unit will measure altitude.

Is it worth the money? Yes. It's a very capable unit and if you want to record data during a ride for later doawnload and review, it works great. Very reliable.

Note that the S725 is almost exactly the same as the S720i except that the S725 WILL NOT auto start and stop the ride time and logging as you start and stop riding (like a typical bike computer). The S720i does have an autostart option. Why Polar deleted this feature is quite beyond me since you could disable it in the S720i if you don't care for it.
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Old 07-06-05, 11:54 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by supcom
Note that the S725 is almost exactly the same as the S720i except that the S725 WILL NOT auto start and stop the ride time and logging as you start and stop riding (like a typical bike computer). The S720i does have an autostart option. Why Polar deleted this feature is quite beyond me since you could disable it in the S720i if you don't care for it.
This is exactly my issue with the 725... i even emailed Polar asking why they would get rid of such a valuable feature... the response stated they'd pass it along to R&D (polite way of blowing me off).

Other than that, I have been pleased with the 725, though i would recommend the 720 if you can get it significantly cheaper.
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Old 07-07-05, 03:49 PM   #4
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I think the S720i was developed after the S725, thus the reason why the S720 has the autostart feature.
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Old 07-08-05, 08:36 PM   #5
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I have an S720i and have been very impressed with it. There are some occasional glitches in the data (200RPM cadence, 300MPH top speed) but they are easily edited out of the data once downloaded to the computer.
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Old 07-14-05, 07:47 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Doctor Who
I think the S720i was developed after the S725, thus the reason why the S720 has the autostart feature.
That is a great feature but does it lack the altitude reading? What about temperature?
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Old 07-14-05, 08:20 AM   #7
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I wouldn't trust any of the altitude measurements on a watch anyways. Unless it was GPS, even then...
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Old 07-14-05, 11:07 AM   #8
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I wouldn't trust any of the altitude measurements on a watch anyways. Unless it was GPS, even then...
Barometric altimeters are quite accurate, once they're calibrated.

If you don't trust barometric or GPS altimeters, that doesn't leave very many alternatives.

I've been using the 720i for a few years now. The altitude drift from start to finish of a typical bike ride never exceeds 40 feet.
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Old 07-14-05, 11:14 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OB1
Power measurement and altitude measurement intrigue me the most. Anyone have any experience using these functions?
If you're serious about power measurement, do not buy the Polar power unit. It's essentially worthless. The rest of the Polar features (speed, cadence, heart rate, altitudem data logging) work fine.

Expect to spend several hundred dollars more for power measurement. The PowerTap Pro is probably the standard. Too bad it doesn't have an altitude feature.
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Old 07-14-05, 11:25 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by operator
I wouldn't trust any of the altitude measurements on a watch anyways. Unless it was GPS, even then...
Trust? How critical are altitude readings while riding a bicycle? I'm just giving you a hard time, but it's not like you're flying a plane over the Himalayas. I just use my altimeter to give me an idea about how much climbing I did on a particular route and to see what my heart-rate and speed was on a particular climb (or descent).

Here's a graph of altitude over distance on Calaveras Road here in the SF Bay Area of California as measured by my Polar 725i. This was an out-and-back run. What immediately struck me was the near-perfect symmetry of the graph, indicating that although the readings may not be absolutely accurate, they do appear to be consistent. To me, that makes it a usable feature.



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Old 07-14-05, 11:29 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by operator
I wouldn't trust any of the altitude measurements on a watch anyways. Unless it was GPS, even then...
GPS has poor altitude accuracy. You'r better off using a barometric altimeter. The better handheld GPS units incorporate a barometric altimeter into them.
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Old 07-14-05, 07:14 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fitmiss
That is a great feature but does it lack the altitude reading? What about temperature?
The S720i measures and displays altitude and temperature.
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Old 07-18-05, 03:28 PM   #13
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Many thanks for the responses. Being able to plot heart rate, temp, and altitude on the same graph would be nice to access overall effort for a given ride. Can those of you using the S720i advise if this type of graphing is available through the software.
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Old 07-19-05, 12:07 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by terrymorse
If you're serious about power measurement, do not buy the Polar power unit. It's essentially worthless.
There's a couple of head-to-head comparisons of Polar v. PT v. SRM on the web (here's one) that seem to disagree with you.

The Polar has some issues on trainers but it seems to track reasonably well against the other two when they're all used on the road at the same time. The big drawback of the Polar seems to be that it's a huge PITA to setup right. If you don't have anything at all, the PT is probably the right thing to buy, if you already have a power capable Polar, the $300 power sender is a better buy than $1000 worth of PT wheel and computer.
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Old 07-19-05, 12:20 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doctor Who
I think the S720i was developed after the S725, thus the reason why the S720 has the autostart feature.
I think my 710i was produced before either of them and it's got auto start/stop. I have a theory why as/s was removed from the 725... on my 710i it's slightly faulty. If you stop then start rolling again within a few seconds the watch won't record the fact that you started and you need to hit the button for a manual start. Kinda annoying in start/stop traffic.

Regardless, the 710i was one of the best purchases I've made. I love it.
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